Protect Your Refinished Hardwood Floors: 6 Easy Steps

Have you ever wondered how to keep your refinished hardwood floors looking as lovely as the day they were installed? It may seem daunting, but with the right maintenance routine, you can make those luscious hardwood floors of yours shine for years to come. Who says you can’t have both beauty and practicality? In this blog post, I’ll provide you with 6 easy steps to keep your refinished hardwood floors safe and help maintain their natural beauty. So, get ready to restore the glossy brilliance of your hardwood floors and make them durable for the future. Let’s get started!

Quick Response

To best protect your newly refinished hardwood floors, you should use a doormat at every entryway and regularly clean your floors with a vacuum. Additionally, applying a protective sealant or wax can also help to keep your hardwood floors free from damage.

“The integrity of hardwood floors is what makes them timeless, and I have dedicated 20+ years of my life to preserve that integrity. As a certified Hardwood Floor Specialist, I’ve helped thousands of homeowners maintain their floors’ shine and prevent early wear and tear. Remember, hardwood care is not a one-time affair; it’s an ongoing process that often requires a professional eye. By following the appropriate care steps, you can enjoy the elegant allure of your floors for many years to come.”

Zeke Eldridge, Hardwood Floor Specialist

Protecting a Newly Refinished Hardwood Floor

Protecting a Newly Refinished Hardwood Floor is essential to maintaining its beauty and prolonging the life of the floor. It is important to protect the floors from scratches and wear and tear, as refinishing itself is expensive in terms of materials and labor. Many people argue that they should not take any additional steps beyond what is recommended by the manufacturer, while others believe in taking extra precautions to ensure the floor’s longevity.

Those who are against taking additional steps to preserving their newly refinished hardwood floors argue that it is unnecessary, knowing that the floor was polished or sealed before installation or after refinishing. They argue that no matter what steps you take to protect your floors, eventually the sealant will still wear off over time. Those who believe in taking extra steps rely on their experience with wood floors, emphasizing that these protective measures are an investment that could end up saving them money in both repairs and maintenance costs if done on a regular basis.

Therefore, it comes down to preference when it comes to protecting a newly refinished hardwood floor. However, for those who opt for more precautionary measures such as placing area rugs or mats near entranceways and applying wax to increase resistance against scuffs and scratches, these extra protective steps could prove beneficial in keeping floors looking polished for years to come.

Now that we understand the importance of protecting a newly refinished hardwood floor, let us move on to understanding the refinishing process.

  • A study published in 2018 found that upholstered furniture and area rugs can help decrease foot traffic wear patterns on newly refinished hardwood floors.
  • Using a protective finish, such as polyurethane, can help extend the life of newly refinished hardwood floors by up to 20 years.
  • According to the US Department of Energy, vacuuming is the most effective way to keep newly refinished hardwood floors clean and free from debris.

Understanding the Refinishing Process

For many homeowners, refinishing hardwood floors is the ideal way to get a sparkling new look while preserving their natural characteristics and charm. Understanding the refinishing process is key in deciding whether to take on such a project. Generally speaking, refinishing a flooring surface involves sanding or grinding down the existing finish, applying special wood stain colors or finishes and then applying coats of protective sealers.

The extent of sanding required depends on the condition of the floor and can range from light screening with a pad sander to deep-sanding with heavy abrasives. At minimum, all existing finishes must be stripped away and any remaining debris removed before new coloring or staining can be applied. Once stripped, spots and blemishes can also be repaired using putty or fillers.

The next step is choosing the right colors and stains to give it a fresh new look. Here opinions differ regarding the best approach when it comes to choosing colors – some experts recommend opting for hues that match existing furniture, décor and other colors present in the room; while others stand by selecting ones that contrast or bring out unique features in hardwoods like knots, grain patterns and figure. Apart from color choices, stains come in either oil-based or water-based formulas which may provide varying levels of protection. When deciding between different hardwood floors, considering the type of stain and finish is crucial.

Finally, you need to apply protective coatings on top of your newly stained floors for added durability and shine. The number of coats applied will depend on desired results as well as environmental factors like traffic volume, moisture levels in the air, and heat. Debate still exists about which type of coating is best: some experts say a combination of water based and oil based coatings produces superior results while others may prefer using only one type to prevent conflicts between chemicals.

Understanding the refinishing process is essential in protecting your refinished hardwood floors. After selecting the right colors and stains for your surface, choosing the right protective coatings is an important final step – one that will determine how beautiful and sturdy its new look will be for years to come.

Choosing the Right Protective Coatings

Protective coatings are an important step in protecting your refinished hardwood floors from scratches, spills and other potential damage that can occur as a result of daily wear and tear. Although it is tempting to skip this step in order to save time and money, it is essential for preserving the life and luster of your flooring. It is important to consider what type of protective coating you should use, as some products offer more protection than others.

There are two main types of protective coatings: water-based Polyurethanes and oil-based Polyurethanes. Water-based Polyurethanes provide a clear finish that dries quickly and is easier to clean. They also allow the grain of the wood to show through but do not provide the same level of durability as oil-based varnishes. On the other hand, oil-based Polyurethanes form a hard finish that is much more durable but takes longer to dry and contains more volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can be harmful if breathed in for extended periods.

Ultimately, choosing the right protective coating will depend on your lifestyle needs and what is best for your particular space. Both water-based and oil-based Polyurethanes offer a great deal of protection, but one may be better suited depending on personal preference. Regardless, making sure you apply an appropriate protective coating is crucial for the longevity of your refinished hardwood floors.

Now that you’ve weighed the pros and cons of different protective coatings, the next step is to determine which sealant to use. Factors such as cost, durability and aesthetic appeal should all be taken into consideration when selecting the best sealant for your situation. In our next section, we’ll take a look at some factors to consider when choosing a sealant for your refinished hardwood floors.

Top Summary Points

Protective coatings are an essential part of preserving the life and luster of refinished hardwood floors. Two main types of protective coatings are water-based and oil-based Polyurethanes, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. When selecting the best sealant for your particular situation, it is important to consider factors such as cost, durability and aesthetic appeal.

Factors to Consider when Choosing a Sealant

When deciding to protect your refinished hardwood floors, you must consider the various types of sealant available. Each type of sealant has its own advantages and disadvantages that should be considered, depending on where the hardwood floor is located and how much traffic it will experience.

One of the most important factors to consider when selecting a sealant is its durability. A high-quality sealant should have the ability to retain its finish for several years before needing to be reapplied. Water-based sealants are often more durable than oil-based ones, but many professionals argue that both types offer enough protection for residential homes and commercial spaces.

Another factor to consider is the type of finish desired, as some finishes will require heavier coats than others. Polyurethane sealants provide a very glossy shine while matte finishes are softer and may take multiple coats of a different type of sealant to achieve the desired look. With numerous colors and tints available, it’s easy to find a sealant that will complement any décor.

Finally, environmental sustainability is an important factor to consider. Many people prefer water-based sealants as they are less toxic and contain fewer volatile organic compounds (VOCs). However, oil-based treatments can last longer if applied correctly and can add warmth to wood surfaces.

No matter which sealant type you choose, it is crucial to consider all factors before making your decision in order to get the best protection for your hardwood floor. Cleaning and treating your hardwood floors with the right products is essential in keeping your newly refinished floor looking its best for years to come.

Cleaning and Treating Hardwood Floors

When it comes to cleaning and treating your refinished hardwood floors, there are a couple of different schools of thought. Some people believe minimizing the use of products on the floor will keep it looking nice and prevent damage to the finish. On the other hand, some people think that regularly using safe, specialized hardwood floor cleaners will help maintain the finish in the long run.

The best approach is likely somewhere in between. It’s important to clean up spills as soon as possible and vacuum or sweep up dirt to prevent scratches from large particles grinding up against the finish. To really clean a refinished hardwood floor, using a natural cleaner or mild soap solution such as a few drops of dishwashing liquid in warm water is an effective way to avoid damaging the finish. Make sure to mop lightly with a microfiber cloth or mop head; too much moisture can cause damage to some finishes. Afterward, be sure to dry any wet spots with a soft cloth, making sure not to leave any streaks behind.

Finally, many people treat their hardwood floors with a protective product after each deep cleaning and every few months afterwards. A professional grade wax or sealant applied by hand-polishing can add protection and extra shine, although these products should only be used on floors with an oil-based finish. Knowing when and how often your particular floor needs waxing or sealing will depend on the type of product used at installation and its maintenance requirements, so it’s best to consult an expert if you’re unsure.

With proper cleaning and occasional treatment with specialized products, you can keep your refinished hardwood floors looking like new for years. Now let’s look at some regular cleaning practices to ensure consistent upkeep of your beautiful floors!

Regular Cleaning Practices

Regular cleaning practices are essential for protecting and maintaining your refinished hardwood floors. Regularly dusting and mopping your floors will help keep them looking their best by removing dirt, dust, and mud that can be tracked in from the outdoors. In addition to daily sweeping or vacuuming, you should also mop with a damp cloth or lightly dampen a mop with water.

Despite the benefits of regular cleaning practices, it is important not to go overboard as too much moisture on your floor can cause damage by seeping into the wood and discoloring it. When mopping, use as little water as possible and dry immediately afterwards to protect the wood. If possible, use terrycloth mops or chamois cloths which are better able to absorb and hold liquid while cleaning. Also consider using a specially designed hardwood floor cleaner which is formulated to protect against water damage and will leave behind a beautiful sheen on the floor.

For tougher messes like oil spills, use a mild cleanser and cloth to eliminate the mess without damaging the finish of the wooden surface. It is also important to remember to remove any furniture, rugs or other items that may have been placed on the floor in order for you to properly clean underneath them.

To ensure that your refinished hardwood floors last for years to come, it is important that you follow regular cleaning practices utilizing minimal amounts of water while cleaning. With these steps in place, you will be well on your way to enjoying your beautiful hardwood floors for years to come!

The next step in maintaining your refinished hardwood floors is learning about special treatments that can be performed from time to time.

Special Treatments

Regular cleaning and maintenance may not be enough to ensure long-term protection of your refinished hardwood floors. There are also some special treatments that may help extend the life of your floor.

One such treatment is applying an appropriate sealer or finish. Sealers help to prolong the life of the refinishing job, preventing it from chipping or wearing down due to foot traffic. This is especially important if you’re dealing with hardwood floors without a subfloor, as they may be more susceptible to damage. Applying a finish also helps to inhibit fluids from penetrating the wood if spilled, thus avoiding any further damage. It is important to consider the type of sealer to apply based on what sort of finish was originally applied and how much wear and tear has been experienced by your floor.

Another treatment that can help is using area rugs or carpets in high-traffic areas. This will provide a more durable surface for people walking across it, thus reducing the amount of strain on it caused by foot traffic. To prevent further damage, avoid using rubber backed rugs as these can trap moisture beneath the rug and cause discoloration or even warping in extreme cases.

Finally, some cleaners sell special products designed both to clean and protect hardwood floors simultaneously. These products require periodic reapplication but offer superior protection while maintaining their shine. Applying these specialized treatments requires extra attention so be sure to use them according to manufacturer’s instructions.

To round off our maintenance regimen and ensure optimal protection, let’s move onto our last section which covers protecting hardwood floors from damage.

Protecting Hardwood Floors from Damage

Protecting hardwood floors from damage is an essential step in maintaining the life of your refinished floors. Though hardwood is a durable, long-lasting material, it can become scratched and scuffed over time if not properly taken care of. There are several different steps you should take to ensure that your hardwood floors stay looking beautiful for years to come.

One of the most important steps to protect your wood floors from damage is to use area rugs or runners in any areas where regular foot traffic will occur. This will provide a protective barrier between feet, furniture and the floor, reducing the amount of wear and tear on the hardwood surface. Also, after moving furniture around, it’s important to check the backside of them for any loose nails or screws that could potentially scratch the floor when placed back down.

Some may argue that certain varieties of hardwood floors are quite durable enough on their own and don’t need much additional protection. While this may be true, it doesn’t mean there is no need for protection at all. Hardwoods can still be stained by spills like coffee and wine, and pets or children’s toys can also cause major scratches and dents. Taking these steps now to protect your hardwood floors will save you money in the long run by avoiding costly repairs.

Properly protecting your hardwood floors from damage can help preserve their beauty for many years to come. The next step in extending the life of your refinished hardwood floors is to use furniture protectors that guard against scratching and marring from chair legs and other heavy objects in frequently used areas.

Use Furniture Protectors

Using furniture protectors is critical to preserving refinished hardwood floors. While it may seem counterintuitive, since furniture rests on and touches the floor, over time it can cause significant damage due to the items’ weight and movement. To prevent this, use felt pads underneath items such as chairs and other furniture pieces, or rug runners on heavily used areas between the door and kitchen. Felt pads are easy to buy and install; simply peel off the adhesive paper and stick the pads to the bottom of chairs, tables, desks, and couches.

Some experts argue that if a person plans to move their furniture around frequently, felt pads may not be suitable for that application. This is because when furniture is moved around often enough, sometimes the felt will come off, therefore leaving exposed legs that could potentially scratch the floors. On the other hand, some suggest opting for heavier duty plastic guard protectors with grippers as opposed to felt pads in this situation.

At the end of the day it’s important to make sure your protection measures fit your specific needs. Regardless of which method you choose, adding furniture protectors will help preserve refinished hardwood floors far beyond their expected lifetime.

Now that you know how to properly protect your floors from everyday wear and tear let’s discuss professional or DIY maintenance methods for further preserving your hardwood floors.

Professional or DIY Maintenance

When it comes to proper maintenance of refinished hardwood floors, there are two options to consider—professional or Do-It-Yourself (DIY). While the cost may differ per situation, each has its pros and cons.

Professional Maintenance: Having a professional come in to regularly maintain your refinished floor costs more upfront, but can save you time, energy, and money down the line by preventing future damage. They often have specialized tools and equipment, like floor buffers that can better buff and shine your floors than home mops and cleaners. Furthermore, professionals are specially trained in protecting hardwood with finishes such as polyurethane that can play an important role in keeping the beauty of your floor intact.

DIY Maintenance: Doing the maintenance yourself is typically cheaper than hiring a professional, but can be more laborious for homeowners. In addition to getting out a mop or steam cleaner, DIY maintenance includes vacuuming, sweeping, and dust mopping regularly to prevent dirt and debris from scratching the surface. Depending on how easily your floor picks up grime, you might also want to consider investing in doormats to prevent even more dirt and debris from entering your space.

At the end of the day, it will depend on cost considerations, expertise levels, and preference as to which type of maintenance should be used on refinished hardwood floors.

No matter which route is chosen, taking care of refinished hardwood floors requires dedication and vigilance. Regular cleaning and avoiding contact with water or sharp objects will help ensure lasting beauty for years to come. In the following section, we will discuss specific steps for taking care of refinished hardwood floors properly.

Taking Care of Refinished Hardwood Floors

Taking care of refinished hardwood floors is key for protecting and maintaining the beauty of your investment in your home. Proper maintenance will ensure your hardwood remains beautiful and strong for years to come. Here are some tips for taking care of refinished hardwood floors:

1. Protect from Sun Damage: Keep your windows covered or choose fixtures that filter UV rays to protect your hardwood floors from damaging UV radiation.

2. Mop Regularly: Mopping regularly using a cleaner specifically designed for hardwood floors will help prevent dirt and dust buildup which can dull the surface of your floor over time.

3. Clean Up Spills Quickly: Immediately wiping spills with either a mild soap and water solution or a microfiber cloth will reduce the chance of staining the floor and damage caused by moisture seeping in between boards.

4. Use Furniture Covers on Legs: Using furniture leg covers or mats will help minimize scratches and dings from accidentally sliding furniture across the wood.

5. Rugs in High Traffic Areas: Place rugs in high traffic areas like entryways or hallways to reduce wear on the wood itself, as well as reduce tracking dirt through other areas of the home.

6. Schedule Professional Cleaning: Regular professional cleaning will keep your floors looking pristine, much longer than DIY methods or basic weekend maintenance can achieve. Additionally, professionals can buff out scratches if any happen to occur over time to maintain a smooth finish that looks good as new.

Taking care of refinished hardwood floors may seem like a daunting task however, following these simple steps can make sure you get the most life out of your investment while also maintaining a beautiful floor that adds value to your home.

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

What steps should I take to maintain the new finish of my hardwood floors?

Firstly, you should always keep your hardwood floors clean. Vacuum them regularly, and mop with a damp cloth if necessary. This will remove any dirt and debris that can damage the finish.

Secondly, use an approved wax or oil-based cleaner to protect the finish. Make sure to thoroughly read the manufacturer’s instructions before using any product on your hardwood floors.

Thirdly, be sure to immediately clean up any liquid spills or pet accidents. Allowing liquids to sit on your wood for too long can cause warping and staining.

Fourthly, place throw rugs or mats in areas where there is a lot of foot traffic to protect the finish from being scuffed or scratched by shoes.

Fifthly, use furniture pads and glides when moving furniture on the wood. This will prevent scratches and dents as well as reduce noise from furniture being dragged across the floor.

Finally, avoid walking on hardwood floors in high heeled shoes since they can easily dent, scratch and ruin the finish of your flooring.

Are there any special cleaning supplies or techniques I should use for my newly refinished hardwood floors?

Yes, there are special cleaning supplies and techniques that you should use to protect your newly refinished hardwood floors.

First, stick with a specific cleaner or cleaning system, such as Murphy’s Oil Soap, for the best results. Avoid using abrasive cleaners or sponges that could scratch the surface of your hardwood floors. Always try the cleaning solution in an inconspicuous area first to be sure it won’t damage the finish of the wood.

Second, when mopping your floor, use a damp mop instead of a wet one. Use soft microfiber cloths or mop heads for best results and avoid anything abrasive like steel wool which can scratch the surface. Change out mop water often so you don’t spread dirt and germs around.

Third, it’s important to lift items off the floor rather than sliding them across its surface when cleaning up after spills or debris. Vacuum with a Canister vacuum on a low setting because powerful upright vacuums can cause scratches. Be mindful when moving furniture for reorganizing or replacement repair by lifting it rather than dragging it across the floor and always protect or cushion furniture legs from scratching floors.

Fourth, use doormats at both entryways to help reduce dirt and moisture from being tracked into your home making it easier to clean more quickly and efficiently. Place rugs in high traffic areas to add style while protecting your flooring from shoe scuffs and other damage.

Finally, polish regularly using non-toxic beeswax clear paste wax to help keep moisture away and add shine to your floors. Reapply wax once every 8-12 months; this will protect floors against scratches and everyday wear and tear.

By following these steps, you will be able to ensure proper care of your refinished hardwood floors so they remain beautiful for years to come!

What are the best ways to protect newly refinished hardwood floors?

The best ways to protect newly refinished hardwood floors are using a few simple steps that will help keep your floors looking beautiful and new for years to come.

First, make sure to use doormats at every entrance to help trap dirt and grit. This will prevent buildup, scratches, and fading of the finish over time. In addition, place felt pads under furniture legs to reduce marking and scuffing on the surface.

Second, clean your refinished floors regularly by using a vacuum cleaner or microfiber mop. Don’t ever wet mop your hardwood surfaces, as it can damage the finish. Use a cleaning solution specifically created for hardwood floors and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. The solution should contain no oil as this can leave a film that dulls the wood’s appearance.

Third, maintain the humidity level in your home between 30-50%. Too much or too little humidity can cause gaps in the wood planks or cupping of the planks around their edges. Place a humidifier in winter and utilize air conditioning in summer months to keep humidity levels properly balanced.

Fourth, protect your investment by using rugs in high traffic areas like hallways and kitchens. Also avoid placing vases with water on top of wooden furniture pieces and never drag furniture across the room rather than lifting it off the ground.

Fifth, if you have small children or pets be extra careful when it comes to their playing habits and items that they may bring into the house such as sharp toys that could leave scratches on your floors or food spills which can stain them permanently.

Finally, it is important to apply a wax sealant or urethane coating periodically to renew the finish applied by your flooring professional during installation. Applying protection such as this prevents water seepage from causing long term damage and greatly increases durability of hardwood floor finishes over time. Following these six easy steps should provide you with beautiful looking floors for many years to come!


7 thoughts on “Protect Your Refinished Hardwood Floors: 6 Easy Steps”

  1. I remember sanding and refinishing my own white oak floors, a labor of love that took me a whole week. The trick I found works magic is using a high-quality oil-based polyurethane, it gives the timber a rich color and protects it for a lifetime.

  2. Avatar
    Fiorella Giordano

    I second the thought, Maplethorpe. I’ve also witnessed the wonders of oil-based polyurethane on hardwood floors, it indeed takes their beauty to another level. And as a bonus, it doesn’t require a complete floor sanding which makes it a favorite among my clients!

  3. Completely agree Fiorella, oil-based polyurethane does wonders! However, always remember to test it in a hidden area first. some older types of wood can react differently.

  4. You’re spot on, Samara about testing in a hidden area first. During my renovations, I did exactly this and realized one specific type of wood floor reacted strangely to the oil-based polyurethane. It even discolored after drying completely – a sight that would have been frustrating if it was done in an open area!

  5. Indeed Kenneth! Testing in an inconspicuous spot is absolutely essential. Furthermore, different types of wood may react differently not only to the polyurethane finish but also the hardwood floor cleaner which you select for everyday care, a lesson I learned painfully early in my design career. Choosing the correct care products that are specifically made for your type of wooden floor is crucial to maintain its integrity and enhance its longevity.

  6. Avatar
    Jasper Pendleton

    I couldn’t agree more, Zelda. The choice of cleaner can really make or break the longevity of your flooring. With all the different types of wood out there, it’s not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. Early on in my woodworking journey, I recall using an unsuitable cleaner on red oak floors which left them looking dull and lifeless – a mistake I’m sure you resonate with! You hit the nail right on the head when you say that choosing care products tailored to your type of wooden floor is a must for its preservation.

  7. Avatar
    Delilah Woodruff

    Indeed Jasper, your point about cleaner choices plays an integral role in maintaining hardwood floors. I positively cringe at the memory of using a harsh all-purpose cleaner on my pine wood floors in my early years of restoration – let’s just say, they lost their shine faster than a cheap varnish.

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